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Here at PropertyNow, we’ve been quietly working away behind the scenes and some exciting things are happening!

When we first founded PropertyNow over 10 years’ ago, we were a small family business operating on a shoestring budget. Everything from accounting and administration to website design was handled in-house. The growth we’ve experienced up until now has been a natural progression – the result of customers spreading the good word to family and friends.

But more recently we’ve captured the attention of some key influencers. And we’ve secured some incredible assistance that will help us improve our offerings and continue to challenge the industry to give you competitive selling options.

Welcome, Mark Bouris…

As recently mentioned in the Fin Review , entrepreneur and prominent businessman, Mark Bouris and Yellow Brick Road have joined PropertyNow as shareholders. Mark joins shareholder Jeremy Same (Fin Review Rich Lister and co-founder of Lux Group), who’s been invaluable in helping us shape our technology and website to become more customer-focused.

This is an exciting milestone for PropertyNow. Mark is a respected and well-known innovator with a successful track record for scaling businesses. In the 90s, he pioneered securitisation via his Wizard Home Loans business, teaming up with major distribution partners across Europe to provide cheaper mortgages and undercut the banks. By 2004, Wizard’s mortgage book had swollen to $19 billion and the business was sold to GE for over $500 million.

Mark went on to partner with Nine Entertainment Co. and Macquarie Bank, founding Yellow Brick Road, a mortgage broking firm offering financial service products to everyday Australians. Yellow Brick Road is now an ASX listed company with a loan book of $30.8 billion under advice, $400m in funds under management and annual revenues of over $165 million.

Mark’s investment in PropertyNow not only gives us more street credit for future investors; it enables us to adopt more creative ways to spread the word about our services. As of today, many Australians are unaware they can sell their own home and avoid paying expensive agent commissions. But they’re also becoming increasingly comfortable with the process of transacting online and so the scope for PropertyNow as awareness sets in is huge. Read more: PropertyNow in the Media.

Mark will be invaluable in steering us through the next few years and what’s shaping up to be a significant growth phase.

Proud recipients of a $70k government innovation grant

We’re ecstatic to have been awarded a $70k government tax incentive in recognition for our proprietary technology. These incentives are part of the government’s move towards fostering a culture of business innovation. Awarded to businesses recognised for bringing something new and innovative to the market, it speaks volumes for how we’re being perceived and the value we’re creating within our industry. Read more about our platform for private sellers and landlords.

Domain show corporate conscience by backing down on price hikes

As many of you will know, we’ve been the key activist in lobbying for both realestate.com.au and Domain to abandon proposed price increases (increases which could cripple the For Sale By Owner industry). While realestate.com.au are yet to even respond to any of our appeals, we’d like to congratulate Domain for having a corporate conscience and agreeing to back down.

Even though our competitors Buy My Place and For Sale By Owner refused to join us in lobbying, Domain’s cooperation is a huge win for our industry. Such price hikes force us to dramatically increase our costs, lower our service levels (or pass the costs onto customers like you) – none of which PropertyNow are prepared to do.

We’ll continue appealing to realestate.com.au in the hope they’ll see the same sense as Domain. Competition is healthy and it’s essential alternative sales avenues like ours are kept open.

The future looks bright

These are exciting times for real estate - the industry horse has bolted! As sellers, you now have more options for selling than ever before. Agents will need to up their game and restructure their services if they’re going to deserve the extortionate commissions they currently get away with.

Agent-assisted private sale platforms are here to stay. And at PropertyNow, we feel confident and excited about our position in the market. We’re the only private selling platform with our own proprietary technology. We’re in a stable financial position being virtually debt-free and careful with our cash flow (we reinvest everything back into the business).

And above all this, we’re gaining a huge amount of respect within our industry (YourHotProperty recently chose us to look after their clients when their business transitioned into another field).

What does the future hold?

Grab your sunnies and watch this space – it’s looking bright.